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Parental involvement in juvenile cases in Philadelphia

There are many influences on children in Philadelphia. These influences can come from a variety of places, such as peers, family, sports, entertainment and many other places. Some of these influences are good for the child and some are bad. If the child follows the wrong influences sometimes it can get them into trouble. Some of the decisions juveniles make will also get them in trouble with the law.

Juveniles can be charged with the same types of crimes as adults, but their cases and punishments are handled differently than those for adults. The main goal is to rehabilitate the juvenile in order to correct the behavior that led to the juvenile crime. Often times, the juvenile will be ordered to complete certain programming instead of simply being detained in a detention center.

Another way the courts try to encourage rehabilitation is by involving the juvenile's parents into the case. Judges can order parents to attend all the court appearances throughout the case, to participate with the child in community service, therapy, educational programs and other activities the juvenile is required to complete. The court can even order the parent to pay restitution or order monetary penalties directly to the parents.

The goal, though, is that the parents are involved without court orders. Parents want what is best for the children and the court makes efforts to ensure that their concerns are met. The court can also provide certain resources for the parents to assist them throughout the process.

Many juveniles in Philadelphia are charged with crimes each year. To help achieve the goal of rehabilitation, courts may order parents to be involved in the process. However, these punishments will only occur if the juvenile is convicted. Just like adults, juveniles are innocent until proven guilty. Experienced attorneys understand the juvenile justice system and may be able to help protect one's rights.

Source: Pennsylvania Juvenile Court Judges' Commission, "Pennsylvania Juvenile Delinquency Benchbook, Chapter 9," accessed on Oct. 5, 2015

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